Today’s Realization

Instead of our normal Sunday routine, in which DH and I putter around the house after our morning Starbucks and grocery shopping, we met some friends in Berkeley for an afternoon of hanging out and catching up with one another.  My brother came too.  It was really nice to see them all – especially since most of their get togethers happen when I’m at work or have other plans.

The morning started out OK.  I woke up with a headache and a bit of an achy back and neck.  Grr…  I weighed myself for my Sunday check-in and found that I’d lost 6 pounds in the past week.  Don’t get too excited or worried, though.  I know a lot of that was probably water weight that I’d gained from eating those bags of chips and theme park food the week before.  The weight loss should slow down to something more reasonable soon.

After that, I put together a menu for the week and a grocery list.  We headed off to Starbucks where I was able to make a deliciously healthy decision because of the nutritional info from their website.  Then it was time to buy some groceries before we headed out to Berkeley.

We wandered around downtown for a bit.  I found a great cookbook at Half Priced Books.  A man with some kind of mental illness tried to talk to me.  DH and my brother wondered if I knew him because he was so excited to see me.  I don’t – I just give off pheromones for homeless and crazy people.  We met our friends at Games of Berkeley (great shop BTW, and locally owned too), followed by a late lunch at Jupiter.

I perused the menu and picked out a delicious red and gold beet salad with goat cheese and champagne vinaigrette.  I paired it with a refreshing beer and enjoyed my time with friends.  About 3/4 of the way through my beer – long after my salad was eaten – I was hit with a familiar craving.  If there was a plate of cookies in front of me, or a cake, or brownies, or ice cream… any sweet yummy goodness really… I would have eaten it without thinking twice.  I would have kept on eating until it was all gone or I was too stuffed to eat another bite.  Luckily there weren’t any sweets nearby, and I was forced to ignore this craving until it went away.

We came home and I had another beer. And started another.  I know, I know, you don’t have to tell me that multiple beers don’t fit in with a healthy eating plan.  About then, I decided to make our lunches for tomorrow.  I was so excited to pack those pre-packaged snack packs that are about 100 calories and contain those special little treats.  You can imagine my heartbreak when I flipped over the individual packs to read several hundred calories and way too many grams of fat in that little nutritional box.  I guess DH is getting all the snack packs he can stomach.  Me? I get to make healthier decisions.  *sigh*

I finished my beer and put the bottle into recycling.  Out of the corner of my eye I saw a forlorn little cookie snack pack.  I said “I need to eat the cookies!” I opened the package, took one cookie and popped it into my mouth.  DH immediately jumped up and said “Give me those cookies.  They’re not good for you.  I’m supporting your healthy eating and you can’t eat these.”  I knew he was right, but I pouted anyway.

OK… so this long, rambling story has a point: I can’t drink and make healthy eating decisions. I realized this as I was pouting in my corner of the living room, acting like a child because my loving husband saved me from making a decision that I would become upset about later.

I had been reading this book called Almost Alcoholic (ISBN 9781616491598), which is about recognizing and addressing drinking that can’t be defined as alcoholism but is still outside the realm of “normal” drinking.  The authors explain that a lot of people become depressed when drinking habitually because alcohol lowers inhibitions, including your inhibitions towards certain feelings.  That’s why people who are normally mild mannered may become angry or mean when they drink, and shy people may become more outgoing.  In my case, alcohol not only lowers my resistance to cravings for sweets, it also lowers my inhibitions when it comes to pursuing them.  So, I’ll avoid drinking except under planned special circumstances so that I don’t make decisions that I’ll regret later.

By the way, the book is really interesting, and is the first in a series of “Almost Effect” books.  The idea is that there are a number of behavioral and physical problems that fall outside the realm of “normal” but aren’t quite enough to be considered “full-blown.”  I don’t think I’m on the “almost alcoholic” spectrum, but I do recognize the behavioral change that happens when I drink.  Since sweets are usually pretty easy to get my hands on, I’ll just avoid the trigger (alcohol) to control my intake of sweets.

Just thought I’d share my epiphany for today.  Now it’s time to head to bed.  I have an early, busy day tomorrow.


Back on the Wagon

I haven’t really been watching what I eat.  I also haven’t been exercising.  Those two things combined have made me gain 12.5 pounds in the last 111 days (weight according to my Wii).  That’s on top of the 15 pounds I gained towards the end of 2011/beginning of 2012.  Ugh.

I could tell that I’d gained weight.  After all, my clothes were fitting tighter, it was more tiring to go upstairs, and it was a lot more difficult to keep up with DH’s normal walking speed.  A couple of weeks ago I found myself actually getting mad at him and thinking he was walking faster on purpose – I guess I just didn’t want to admit that I’d gotten fatter and slower.

C25K is a lot more difficult this time around too.  DH and I started C25K a few weeks ago as part of our preparation for the Tinkerbell Half in January.  We’re on week 4 day 2… the other 3 weeks weren’t a picnic.  I found myself strangely reluctant to do something that I’d found so much joy in before.  Yet another sign of being fatter and slower.

So, starting mid-morning yesterday, I got back on the fitness wagon.  I ate healthy foods. I went to the gym and lifted weights.  When DH got home, we went for a run.  And today I’ve eaten according to my plan.  In the interest of full disclosure, I’m planning on starting Alli again.  It worked really well for me in 2008-2009 when I lost 43 pounds on it.  I kept most of the weight off from 2009-2011, and I’ve just gotten suckier at doing what I need to do.

I am pretty hungry though.  And all that damn chocolate, marshmallows, and convenience food isn’t making the munchies go away any quicker.  It’s just about time for my next snack and more water.  Hopefully that’ll last until dinner.  Dinner tonight will be hoisin glazed chicken with seasoned couscous and roasted veggies.  Sounds awesome, doesn’t it?

So, that’s it.  I just need to not be fat, slow, and lazy any more.  And I need to figure out how to stay that way once I achieve my goals.


OH! That’s another thing.  My first weight loss goal is 8 pounds.  I need a prize for when I get there…

Tucked in All Day

The outfit I was planning to wear today fell through, mostly because you can see a purple bra through a white tank top and I didn’t feel like changing my bra.  So instead I wore a blouse tucked into my bootcut jeans with some cowboy boots and a belt.  I’d planned on untucking my shirt after awhile once it mostly untucked itself (and once the belt started bugging me too much), but after all the compliments I got today I decided to keep it tucked!

One of the clerks I supervise said “Danie!  Look how tiny your waist is!”

One of the librarians I work with said “That’s a great look for you!  So polished.”

One of the building maintenance guys said “You look good today – what are you doing differently?”

One of the janitors said “You look skinnier.  Are you still jogging?”

One of the library members I was helping said I was real pretty.

Talk about a self-esteem boost!  And to top it off, the belt didn’t bug me once!  In the past it would dig into my stomach whenever I sat down or crouched or bent at the waist, but today it felt like a firmer waistband instead of a torture device.

It seems like this whole eating right and exercise thing is working the way it’s supposed to!  Since March 1st, I’ve lost 8 pounds.  My waist is down to 30″, my hips are 41″, each thigh is 25.5″ and each upper arm is 13″.  Those are all smaller numbers than they were on March 1st!  All I gotta do is keep up the momentum – I know I can do it!

4 pounds = visible results?

A couple of weeks ago I signed up for SparkPeople, a free social networking website dedicated to health and fitness.  I’d been tracking my food, water and exercise.  I’d been making sure to do cardio and weights and yoga, and making healthier food choices whenever possible.  On Wednesday I weighed myself and found that I’d lost 4 pounds.  Not bad, right?

Well, on one of my walks around the block at work, just after I’d signed up for SparkPeople, one of the patrons saw me and made a comment.  “Hey Librarian!  Enjoy your walk, but don’t lose too much weight – I love a lush woman!”  He looked vaguely familiar, but I couldn’t pick him out of a crowd if I needed to… but he obviously recognized me.  I just waved and kept walking.

On Saturday I was handing out tickets to Martin Yan’s cooking demonstration when the same guy came up to my table.  He smiled and said “Keep walking, you’re looking great!  What’s it been, about 5 pounds?”  I smiled and said “Just about.”

I’m not sure if the guy was hitting on me, being a creepster, trying to be supportive, or just being friendly.  But I wonder if any of you have seen visible results just by losing 4 pounds?  The only thing I notice is that my rings spin around a lot more, but other than that I don’t see anything.  What do you think?

I have a problem…

(This is a repost from my SparkPeople (SP) blog)

…Well, a few of them actually. But this problem is SP related. You see, when I go on vacation or do something outside of my routine, it seems like eating healthfully and exercising go quickly out the window.

Take this weekend for instance. I did this awesome shop hop with my sister and her friend. I started out really good: ate a healthy breakfast, packed a couple of snacks and told myself that I would eat appropriately on the road. I also told myself that I’d find the gym at our hotel and work out there after dinner.

The first day we stopped at Starbucks. I was good with the drink: coffee and some fat free milk. Not so good with the treat. I ordered 3 of those mini vanilla scones. I knew I should have limited myself to 1, or not ordered it at all since I had snacks in the car. I told myself that it was OK to order them because I could just eat 1 (140 calories) for a snack now, and eat the others at other times for snacks.

Before I knew it, I’d eaten all 3 and it was time for lunch. Ugh. Lunch was healthy enough. A 6″ turkey sandwich on wheat with veggies and mustard from Subway. Then I added on the baked Lays Sour Cream and Onion chips. *sigh* I only got them because I was jealous that everyone else got to have chips and I didn’t. Never mind that they’re all pushing 300 lbs, and I’m trying to lose weight. And to top it all off, they didn’t even taste very good. Wasted calories.

I thought I’d share an sleeve of thin mints. The other two people in the car with me had 3-4 cookies each. I ate the rest. Again with the mindless eating.

Along the way there was candy at each shop. And home baked goodies. I was good at first, but by the end of the day I was sampling at each shop.

Then dinner came along. We went to a pasta place. Every single thing on their menu outside of the kids menu had some type of cream sauce on it. Their salad was drenched in a creamy dressing. And I had a glass of wine.

You can probably guess that I didn’t make it to the hotel gym.

Saturday was much the same, except that I remembered I’d packed my exercise bands and used them for a quick upper body workout that morning. I also ate a very healthy breakfast: oatmeal with raisins and walnuts, a banana, some coffee with creamer.

Today I didn’t even really try, although I did order from the fresco menu at Taco Bell.

So I know that I can’t stop just because I traveled and ignored everything healthy this weekend. My plan for tomorrow is to get up bright and early, and jog on my treadmill. Then I’ll work on the weight routine that SP suggests. And I’ll eat healthfully all day too.

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